At 8:21 AM MST This Saturday Morning.
A very long fetch of subtropical moisture stretches from well south and southwest of Hawaii this morning northeast into the Desert Southwest including New Mexico. Looking at local airport observations this cloud deck is generally located at the follow heights above ground level:10,000', 14,000' 17,000', 21-22,000'. There are lower clouds north and west of SE NM.
Needless to say, a very moist airmass located at the mid and high levels of the atmosphere is being pulled into the area by a closed mid-upper level low located at the 18,000' level just northwest of San Diego, CA at sunrise this morning. This is depicted in the graphics below.
Forecast Valid At 2 PM MST Sunday.
Forecast models this morning are in good agreement that this closed low off the California Coast will move eastward today into Sunday. By sunset Sunday it will be exiting stage right in Northeastern New Mexico.
Valid At 5 PM MST Today.
Valid At 5 AM MST Sunday.
Valid At 5 PM MST Sunday.
A Pacific cold front will enter western Arizona by noontime today then zip eastward to eastern Arizona by sunset, and then into Southeastern New Mexico just after sunrise on Sunday morning. By sunset Sunday it will be as far east as Abilene, Texas. That's a pretty fast pace for a cold front.
Windy Locally Sunday.
Valid Today Through Sunday.
As the rule of thumb goes whenever one of these strong closed lows aloft passes across the state to our north then we get robbed most of the time moisture-wise. More often than not we end up with strong southwest and west winds and blowing dust. Given the recent rains this month this will aide in keeping the blowing dust down Sunday locally. Southwest winds are forecast to kick up into the 40 to 50 mph gusts range across the Southeastern Plains. We've been lucky this winter with a noted lack of high wind events locally.
A High Wind Watch remains in effect for the Guadalupe Mountains of Southeastern New Mexico and West Texas for Sunday. West winds sustained at 35 to 45 mph are forecast to gust up to near 70 mph.
Rain showers will break out over the Sacramento Mountains later today then change over to snow tonight. Snow levels will remain high today (around the 11,000' level) then drop down to around the 6,000' level by sunrise Sunday morning. Storm total rainfall totals in the higher elevations could be in the .50" to 1.00" range. Snowfall totals are generally forecast to be around an inch or two above 8,000'. Ski Apache could pick up 4" to 6".
Little to any rainfall is currently forecast to fall over the Southeastern Plains.
The Truth Is Stranger Than Fiction - And Sometimes It Hurts!